The Washington Metro
(officially Metrorail) is the rapid transit system in Washington, D.C.
and its surrounding suburbs. In addition to being one of the nations
best rail transit systems,
It is composed of five color-coded rail lines that run underground primarily within the District and above ground in much of the nearby suburbs.
In addition to the
District of Columbia, Metro provides service to Montgomery County and Prince George's County
in suburban Maryland and service extends to Fairfax County, Arlington County, and
the City of Alexandria. in Virginia There are Metrorail stations in most major neighborhoods and at numerous locations
Fares are paid by purchasing a farecard at automated machines within stations. Posted guides will help you calculate the appropriate fare for your ride, but since the farecards are reusable and refillable, it's often easier to not worry about the fare; just put $5-10 on your ticket and refill as needed. Flat-rate Metro passes  are also available that give riders an unlimited number of trips within the system for a set number of days. These passes are available in each station at many of the automated machines that sell standard farecards.
Metrorail, an example of late-20th century
modern architecture, is one of the regions most popular attractions. In
2007, the design of the Metro's vaulted-ceiling stations was voted #106
on the American Institute of Architects' list of America's Favorite
Metrorail is the second-busiest rapid transit
system in the United States, in number of passenger trips, after the New
York City Subway.
In 1960, the federal government created an agency which became the
Washington Metropolitan Transportation Authority (WMATA) to develop
a rapid rail system. In 1968, WMATA approved plans for a system designed by Chicago
architect Harry Weese. Construction began in 1969. Since
opening in 1976, the Metrorail network has grown to include five lines,
86 stations, and 106.3 miles of track.
Silver Line will be a 23-mile extension of the Orange Line into Loudoun
County, Virginia by way of Tysons Corner and Dulles International
Airport which is
scheduled to open in 2013.
The rail network is designed according to a spoke-hub
distribution paradigm. 50 miles of Metro's track
is underground, as are 47 of the system's 86 stations.
Metro's rail fleet consists of 1,140 75-foot rail cars with a
maximum speed of 59 miles per hour.
Related Links: Metro Rail
WMATA Home Page -
for schedules, fares and other information regarding bus and rail transit
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